If anyone could somehow lighten the heavy emotional baggage that seems to be part of soft-spoken folkie William Fitzsimmons' DNA it's Death Cab For Cutie's Chris Walla. New album Lions (February 18, Nettwerk) the successor to 2011's fine Gold In The Shadow, has the requisite seriousness and oddly sublime sadness at the tormented heart of his songs. But while the Walla-produced album he says, is "the most revealing it can be" it also "has less to do with me than anything I’ve done before." Perhaps it's that personal arms-length attitude. Maybe it's the desire to reach beyond Fitzsimmons' confessional comfort zone and the delicate sound that saw a slight shift in tone on Gold In The Shadow. Lions is still rife with the quiet intensity that has become a Fitzsimmons trademark: the wonderful "Fortune," he says, is "a song about making a decision to walk through a river of shit instead of turning around." The sound, however, is brighter and more sharply focused, Walla giving the track some room to move and breathe on its own. Click through to watch a live, strictly acoustic version of new song "Centralia."
William Fitzsimmons - "Fortune" (from Lions)